Simit Kebap (Ground Lamb, Bulgur, and Pistachio Kebabs)

  • Serves

    serves 6-8


A thick pistachio puree is folded into a mix of ground lamb and bulgur in these garlicky kebabs. This recipe first appeared in our June/July 2013 issue along with Ansel Mullins's article Keepers of the Flame.


  • 12 cup shelled pistachios
  • 14 cup roughly chopped parsley
  • 14 cup roughly chopped mint
  • 1 tsp. crushed red chile flakes
  • 12 tsp. ground allspice
  • 6 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 2 scallions, roughly chopped
  • 12 small yellow onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 red Holland chile, stemmed, seeded, and roughly chopped
  • 1 lb. ground lamb
  • 14 cup fine bulgur, soaked in warm water for 10 minutes and drained
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 9 metal skewers
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. sumac
  • Yogurt and hot sauce, for serving


Step 1

Purée pistachios and ¼ cup water in a food processor until very smooth. Add parsley, mint, chile flakes, allspice, garlic, scallions, onions, and chiles; pulse until almost smooth. Transfer to a bowl. Add lamb, bulgur, salt, and pepper; using hands, mix until combined. Form about ⅓ cup mixture around the end of each skewer (See our guide on how to build kebab skewers); refrigerate until meat is firm, about 1 hour.

Step 2

Heat a charcoal grill or set a gas grill to high; bank coals or turn off burner on one side (see Grilling 101). Grill kebabs on hottest part of grill, turning as needed, until slightly charred and cooked through, 12-15 minutes. Transfer kebabs to a platter; drizzle with oil and sprinkle with sumac. Serve with yogurt and hot sauce.

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